Pieces of Love is a coming of age story with romantic elements. Readers will follow the life changing trip of sixteen year-old Alexis Hartman. When I started reading this story I was constantly waiting for something really bad to happen to Alexis because she is a ticking time bomb. There were a lot of tragedies in her life and she does not know how to deal with them. She wasn't getting any support from her family. So she became rebel. But she is also a magnet for troubles and they find her whether she likes it or not. That is until she boards a cruise ship and meets Ethan Kaswell.
Ethan is totally different from Alexis; he is not a trouble maker, he is nice and has a goal in his life. But there are also some similarities between them. Like Alexis, Ethan had his share of tragedies. But unlike Alexis he didn't choose self-destructing path. And because he knows how to overcome a past he is able to help Alexis.
Both characters are very realistically written. They are both complex and three dimensional. I found them great as a couple, because they both bring out the best in one another. By the end of the book not just Alexis is changed, but also Ethan.
The majority of the story takes place during a three week Mediterranean cruise. That location gives additional value for this story. The descriptions of the places are beautiful, realistic and on key. And most important they do not sound like something copied from the guidebook. After reading those great descriptions I wanted to visit some of these places.
Although I enjoyed Pieces of Love, the story would be much better if the pace was a bit quicker. But that might just be me. I prefer more dynamic stories. If you like coming of age stories and want to take a virtual Mediterranean cruise tour, read this story.
Warning: This is a YA book that contains some underage alcohol and drug abuse.
Synopsis: Being torn between loyalty and guilt can be devastating. That is exactly how sixteen year-old Alexis feels since the death of her sister. But one three week cruise across Mediterranean with her estranged grandmother is about to change her life forever.
Sixteen year-old Alexis Hartman wants nothing more than to smoke pot and play guitar. Getting high and escaping into her music seems the perfect solution when her world is shattered by her sister's death. But when she’s arrested for possession a second time, life couldn’t get any more complicated. Her mother's breakdown is the final straw that forces Lexi to spend the summer on the West Coast with her grandmother, Maddie. When Lexi steps over the line one too many times, she's certain her life is over and that she’s destined for juvenile detention—until Maddie decides that desperate measures are called for. A three week Mediterranean cruise—for seniors.
Eighteen year-old Ethan Kaswell, the poster child for good sons, is stranded on the cruise when his father, a famous heart surgeon, is called away. With his own life perfectly mapped out, Ethan finds Lexi’s unpredictability irresistible. Although he’s smart enough to see that there is no future in falling for a “vacation crush,” Lexi’s edgy dark side draws him like an anchor to the bottom of the sea. As the two embark on the journey of a lifetime, will Lexi finally learn to love someone—even when she has to let them go?